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Taunton drug trafficker who assaulted, injured and attempted to disarm Dartmouth MSP Troopers sentenced to prison



A 38-year-old Taunton cocaine trafficker who assaulted, injured and attempted to disarm Massachusetts State Police troopers during a harrowing incident in Dartmouth about two years ago was sentenced to state prison yesterday, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced.

Guillermo Santana pled guilty to indictments charging him with three counts of Assault and Battery on a Police Officer, and one count each of Trafficking Cocaine, Possession of a Class A Drug, Carrying an Illegal Firearm, Unlawful Possession of Ammunition and Resisting Arrest. He was sentenced to serve eight to 10 years.

On August 30, 2021, Trooper Cody Smith was on patrol and observed an SUV idling with its headlights on while parked at Dartmouth Motor Inn, and another party standing outside of the passenger side. Trooper Smith, aware of the high crime area and suspicious behavior, maintained surveillance of the vehicle and observed the vehicle abruptly pull out of the parking lot with no turn signal, and cut off oncoming traffic before returning to the motel. Based on this behavior, Trooper Smith initiated a stop of the vehicle. Once stopped, both the driver, subsequently identified as Guillermo Santana, and his passenger, opened their doors and attempted to exit the vehicle. Both were advised they were being stopped by the police and to re-enter the vehicle.

According to the DA’s Office, Santana became extremely nervous, looking away from the trooper, and looking towards a black fanny pack in the vehicle, which was within arm’s reach. When asked if he had a valid ID, the defendant stated “No”, and was then asked to step out from the vehicle. Santana refused. At this point, Trooper Smith was joined by Troopers Alex and Ryan Boswell. The troopers attempted to secure the Santana’s arms to remove him from the vehicle.

Santana then attempted to get back in the vehicle towards the center console, where the fanny pack was located. A struggle then ensued between the three troopers and Santana, who was resisting being hand cuffed and angling himself between the car door and the driver’s panel. Based on Santana’s size (300 pounds), the troopers were getting physically worn-down attempting to subdue the defendant and attempted to tase him. Santana broke free with one hand cuffed, and the other cuff was open, potentially acting as a weapon. Santana also reached for his waistband at this time.

The DA’s Office stated that Santana and the troopers then fell to the ground, at which time he attempted to reach for one of the troopers’ firearm. Trooper Smith then deployed his taser, which was unsuccessful. Santana backed away and pulled the taser prongs out of his own arms and torso. He then began to run from the troopers across the parking lot of the motel.

At one point Santana faced Trooper Alex Boswell and reached for his waistband, at which time a fourth trooper deployed his taser and Santana collapsed. As he fell to the ground, troopers observed a black handgun fall from his waistband. Multiple troopers sustained injuries as a result of the struggle/arrest of Santana including Trooper Ryan Boswell, Trooper Alex Boswell, and Trooper Cody Smith.

The firearm, an M&P Shield 9mm handgun, was fully loaded. Inside the fanny pack, police found $7,000 in cash, 32 grams of cocaine, a digital scale, scissors and sandwich bags.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Catherine Sauter and the state prison sentence was imposed by Judge Raffi Yessayan.

“This case clearly highlights the danger law enforcement officers face every day that jeopardize their lives and safety. The defendant violently resisted the troopers lawful exercise of their authority. It’s no coincidence that he was a convicted felon in possession of a handgun and trafficking in cocaine. During the struggle, he repeatedly tried to grab for his own gun and a trooper’s gun,” District Attorney Quinn said. “I commend and admire the actions of the state troopers for their restraint in a very volatile and dangerous situation. The defendant clearly is a danger to the community and needs to be kept off the street.”

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